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Hamilton plans to race 'well into' 40s

Lewis Hamilton Lewis Hamilton - The Canadian Press

Change is imminent for seven-time World Drivers' Championship winner Lewis Hamilton as he prepares to jump to Ferrari next season, but the 39-year-old Englishman isn't ready to leave his career any time soon.

Ahead of the Chinese Grand Prix this weekend, Hamilton says he intends to keep racing "well into" his 40s.

 "I never thought I would be racing into my 40s," Hamilton said. "I'm pretty sure I said I wouldn't. But life is such a crazy trip. I don't feel 40. I generally feel great."

Hamilton cites 42-year-old rival Fernando Alonso as proof that Formula 1 doesn't have to be a young man's game.

"Fernando is one of the best drivers we've had in the sport, so for him to continue to be here and continue to have the output he's had just shows what is possible," Hamilton said of the Aston Martin racer. "And shows the new era of athlete, what the human body can do and continue to do if you nurture it."

A native of Stevenage, Hamilton is currently in his 18th season in F1 and his 12th and final season with Mercedes.

Through four races in 2024, Hamilton sits ninth in the standings and is still looking for his first podium finish of the season.

Hamilton is a record six-time winner in China, grabbing the checkered flag in 2008, 2011, 2014, 2015, 2017 and 2019.

Sunday's race marks a return to the Shanghai International Circuit for the first time in five years.